My answer is simple:
1. I am not settling for low poems or striving for high. I am working a discipline.
2. I go for finding one phrase or (if I'm lucky), one line that pleases my palate as a poet.
3. I am exercising my poet's muscle.
This morning's poem is a premonition or warning. I took on the task with a memory from sailing on the Heritage, the Great Windship Heritage out of Rockland, Maine. I added in a memory from childhood when I heard all my fishermen friends repeat the superstitious ditty found below the poem. I also fed off the image of weather as animal (clouds bucking) and got into a rhythm of 9,10, 10, 9 for the stanzas' meter. Meter is a metronome in my head — one that, to be sure, I check as I write/revise.
I'm also thinking of a song by Neil Diamond that has been playing in my head all morning: If You Know What I Mean.
Took a drag of my last cigarette, took a drink from a glass of old wine.
On my desk is the remains of my Moxie, laced with Stroh Rhum (you can only get it IN Austria) and the remains of last night's wine. I took a picture of the two glasses. My rum and moxie is in a RED SOX glass, my wine in a glass that says, live your life. I am truly in love with the irony of the life of a poet.
So here I am, in my garrett, (translated: my office) while the snow lies all about in drifts so beautifully pure and soft. I am warm with a fluffy purple blanket around my shoulders. I feel satisfied. My hubby and grandsons are downstairs gearing up for the day's football games. They are being manly and I am being "me-ly." Life is great. 2012 is winding down like a dysfunctional clock. I look forward to what's next. January is my birthday month (yes, I celebrate all month) and I am rushing to meet it with poems in both fists. I will complete the Wilbur manuscript this year (hopefully by May) and will surprise myself with whatever's next.
So a sip of Moxie Stroh to all of you who are wondering where the next poem is, whether you will be up to writing it, and if it will be good enough. I say it will be right where you last thought of an interesting word; it's waiting for you to pick it up, stretch it and write it on a page. It will be good enough because you encountered it and welcomed it. Go find it. Pick up the pen.
Happy New Year!
The Day 30 (December) Poem: